Friday, 22 May 2009

A Brave New World

We have now officially entered the brave new world of social networking. Our new _space Life site is now up and running and we are going through our tests as we build up the content. I believe that social networking is building more and more momentum with increasing numbers of the people that I meet inadvertently mentioning YouTube or images on Facebook.

We are really hoping to bring the site to life and my vision is that it becomes a centre for all of the stories for the communities which we work within.

I spent the last few days in the South looking at several new schools and academies as I am always keen to see what is being done by others. On my travels I can across a very interesting new private school which had open air corridors giving students a good blast of fresh air. With a likely change of Government we are keeping our eyes open as to how a new Government may want to reform the education system. There are models in Scandinavia where education is delivered by the private sector under a voucher system. This has to be a realistic possibility under a conservative Government.

The racing season has started and I attended my first meeting in York last week. One of my favourite things throughout the summer is horse racing. I love the atmosphere and meeting people however, I am not a huge gambler. There are many meeting throughout the year and we hope for a glorious summer. It has to be better than sitting at St James Park.

At the end of the week I am off to Florida to spend some time with Mickey Mouse and my 5 year old daughter. I will be wearing my Mickey Mouse ears and really getting into the spirit of things. A trip to Orlando is far from an architectural pilgrimage but still great fun.

There are unlikely to be any great revelations in my blog upon my return however, I have packed my usual collection of business biographies so who knows how this may influence _space over the months ahead.

Friday, 1 May 2009

Social Media in Space

Times have certainly changed. We have just launched our new website which reflects the diversity of the group. We have also launched a further site which allows us to tell the stories of the people of the buildings we create.

Initially I was a bit of a cynic regarding social networking. I thought it would be another fad and certainly something I would never have the time to use myself. However I find this media creeping more and more into my day to day life.

YouTube is great for watching short clips and space have even started producing video releases rather than press releases for projects we have completed.

I am astonished at the number and type of people who now use Facebook as a way to share photos and keep in touch.

When there is something new happening I have to find out more and understand what it is all about. I was recommended a great book called Meatball Sundae which put new media into context. Spacelife is our step into this world to link up with the people who live in the communities we work within.

These sites are used by all ages, however, there is a whole generation growing up attached to laptops and I phones. I realised times had changed when I watched my 16 year old son sitting on our settee with his girlfriend talking to their friends on MSN.

In our family eBay has also become a bonding activity as well as a small cottage industry operated by my wife and the same 16 year old trading children’s clothes.

Somebody once said to me that there are two types of people when it comes to social networking. There are those who get it and those who don’t. I think I now fall into the former.